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Chains Overhaul Kid’s Choices With Help From Michelle Obama

Soon parents will have healthier options on Red Lobster and Olive Garden menus -- for their children and themselves.

If you visit one of the big chain restaurants Olive Garden or Red Lobster, look for healthier options to appear on the menu — thanks to Michelle Obama.

The First Lady announced the “breakthrough” plan with Darden Restaurants in Hyattsville, Maryland last Thursday.

Darden, the world’s largest full service restaurant company, will make changes to the children’s menu to make it more healthful and reduce overall calories by 10 percent in five years, and 20 percent in ten years.

Obama points out in order for the initiative to work, patrons have to choose the healthier items.

“Parents, we literally have to put our money where our mouths are… We have to give (restaurants) the incentive to do the right thing,” she says.

So far restaurants large and small seem to be getting the hint. McDonald’s has pledged healthier Happy Meals, Burger King is going fresh, and other restaurant chains like Romano’s Macaroni Grill have also pledged less fat and sodium.

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Liz Leslie

Liz Leslie is a journalist based in Chicago. When she's not writing about food, she's likely eating food. Or dreaming about food.

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